Over the last 15 years, Brad Pitt has been behind the production of quality films and also amplifying the stories of people of color but not many people knew of his support for black filmmakers and actors until recent buzz on social media.
This was after a Twitter user praised Pitt for getting more black films done than some other famous black actors/producers. Earlier in January during the Golden Globes, Ava Duvernay had also given a shout out to Brad Pitt and Robert De Niro for their pivotal behind-the-scenes contributions to her projects. “These two, Executive Producer of SELMA on the left. Executive Producer of WHEN THEY SEE US on the right. Both used their muscle to help me get those stories told. A good thing.”
The award winning director wrote, sharing a photo of Pitt and De Niro on Twitter.
While most movie stars focus on producing big box office blockbusters starring themselves, Pitt focuses on telling the stories of people of color and women that most other studios wouldn’t make.
Brad Pitt along with Jennifer Aniston founded Plan B productions which has supported films such as 12 Years a Slave, Selma, The Last Black Man in San Francisco, Moonlight and If Beale Street Could Talk, an adaptation of James Baldwin’s novel. Pitt is also involved in the production of Barry Jenkin’s next project, Americanah with Lupita Nyong’o and Wrong Answer with Ryan Coogler as well.
In recent times, the production company has been run by Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner after Anniston walked away from the company following her divorce from Pitt. Brad Pitt and the team at Plan B have basically thrived by finding people of color, whose talents might otherwise be overlooked by the big six studios; Paramount, Disney, Universal studios, 20th Century Fox, Warner Bros and Columbia Pictures. Plan B also provides giant platforms for those talents to shine.
Prior to his leading role in 12 Years A Slave, Chiwetel Ejiofor had always been a bit part player in flicks such as Salt and Amistad. However, he made a breakthrough for his critically acclaimed role in 12 years A Slave and credited Brad Pitt for the success of the movie. It won the Best Picture category at the 2014 Oscars.
“You know, without him, there wouldn’t be a film,” Ejiofor told Vulture’s Jada Yuan in 2013. “He was just so instrumental in making this film happen. He’s such a champion of filmmakers and the things that he believes in and can put his weight behind. … I don’t know what the full machinations are, but I imagine that he being around and lending that kind of support and weight to something is very freeing for [financiers]. They think, ‘OK, well, we can give the director some latitude.’” Ejiofor said.
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